I am a die hard magazine lover. In high school I would close my bedroom door, put on my favorite mix tape and lay down on my bed for hours reading Sassy magazine. I went to an all girls catholic school and lived in a somewhat conservative area. Flipping through Sassy’s pages and finding other girls who were considered weird for wearing thrift stores and writing poetry made me feel less alone in the world.
Sassy was the only place I could find DIY craft tutorials on how to make a dress from a pillowcase or articles like “Is this Job Weird Enough for You?” or confessional stories like “My Alcoholic Father” or fashion photo shoots inspired by Twin Peaks. Now you can find all this on the internet. Back then not only did we have dial up but I didn’t even get my first email address until I went to college. There were no blogs or Pinterest or Twitter, only Sassy in all its full color glossy paged ‘you’re not the only who feels or looks this way’ glory. Sassy empowered weird artsy girls like me to embrace who they were and get out there and make something.
The year I graduated high school, Sassy passed away. Luckily I had just discovered Bust magazine. Bust was even more avant-garde than Sassy was but it was kind of perfect since by then I was a little more avant-garde as well. Bust took over where sassy left off. My college roommate and I spent many a day sitting in the laundromat not just reading bust but reading every single word. After my Bust magazine had been thoroughly read, I’d take a pair of scissors to it and clip out my favorite images and articles, which I then pasted in my sketchbook.
Debbie Stoller (Bust co-founder/knitting queen and one of my personal idols) said that when they created Bust they aimed to produce a magazine “as fierce and as funny and as pro-female as the women we knew.” Guess what Debbie? You did it! Bust is as good today as it was in that laundromat where I scraped together three quarters and shoved as many clothes in the washing machine as I could during my broker-than-broke college days. Bust started as a black and white photocopied zine. Now with full color profiles on strong independent creatives like Amy Sedaris, Sarah Silverman and Mindy Kaling, Bust has grown into one of the most important publications for women around.
If you weren’t with Bust since the beginning like I was (or even if you were, but sadly let go of all your past issues) you’ll love the Bust DIY Guide to Life that we’re featuring in our Dear Handmade Life DIY and business book club this month. It’s brimming with 250+ projects collected from 15 years of issues and covers crafts, recipes, decorating, finance, family, beauty and fashion and more!
Want to win your very own copy of The Bust DIY Guide to Life + Spruce: a Step by Step Guide to Upholstery and Design (because whose furniture couldn’t use a little DIY love)? Just follow the instructions below to be entered to win. Good luck!
Leave a comment on this post by April 29th at midnight telling us what your favorite magazines are. Make sure to include your email address so we can get your address and ship you some lovely things to read.
We’ll announce the winner on Twitter on April 30th, so be sure to follow us there.
The contest is now closed. Congrats to our winner Serenity!